responsibly raised meats
Our farm is located in beautiful North-Eastern Ohio in Ashtabula County. Over two-hundred acres of pasture and woods are home to our heritage breed Berkshire pigs and Maine Anjou cows. A family farm since 1961, Tod & Shelley Mogren live and work on the farm to raise natural and delicious meat for your family to enjoy.
We believe that our animals should be treated with respect and get all the nutrients and vitamins they would naturally. This is why we do not give them antibiotics or growth hormones and they are not fed corn, soy or animal byproducts. The pigs forage in the woods and the cows graze in the fields, just the way it should be.
Berkshires are a rare breed originally from Britain, prized for juiciness, flavor and tenderness. Known as Kurobota Pork in Japan, these pigs are recognized for having well marbled, high-quality meat. Pigs, unlike cows, are omnivores. This means that grass pasture alone is not enough to provide the proper nutrition.
In addition to the protein-rich alfalfa and barley and the fiber and omega-3 abundant flax given to the pigs, they have free range of the woods to forage for acorns, tubers, grubs and insects. In the fall they are finished on acorns from our grove of red oak trees, which gives the meat an excellent flavor. Unlike the ‘factory farms’ that supply grocery stores with meat, we do not give our animals hard-to-digest corn or soy, animal byproducts, growth hormones, or antibiotics. In fact, raw soybeans are toxic to pigs, chicken and all monogastic animals.
A piglet starts at our farm in the nursery housed in a historical bank barn on the edge of Mill Pond. They run and play with their mates until they are old enough to stay outside. They are then moved to the woods where they graze and forage. At the end they are taken to a humane federally inspected facility.
Maine Anjou cattle are originally from the fertile Anjou region in North-Western France. Introduced into the United States as a multipurpose cow -for beef, milk or even drafting- this breed is recognizable by their light red coats with white spotting (or sometimes all black coats). Meat from the Maine Anjou is known for having excellent marbling and a delicious beefy flavor.
Cows are ruminants, which refers to the way they digest their food. They have four stomachs to break down, absorb the nutrients, and metabolize the forage they eat. Some cattle in the United States are fattened in what are called Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations (CAFOs), of which there are over 15,000 in the U.S.. They are fed corn, among other feed products, to grow as quickly and cheaply as possible. Corn is an energy-dense, nutrient-light grain that is mostly starch and sugar and hard for a cow’s stomach to break down. It causes unsafe levels of tannins in the digestive system that leads to health problems like ulcers and bleeding that can be fatal. To combate these health risks CAFO cows are frequently given a medicine chest of antibiotics to keep them alive and growing.
Fortunately all of this can be avoided simply: let them eat grass. At Millgate they are given free range of our pastures and eat their natural diet without corn, soy, animal byproducts, antibiotics or growth hormones. This benefits not only the health of the cow, but your health as well.
Allowing the animals to eat their natural diet of grass and forage is not only healthier for them and you, it is better for the environment. Instead of having to buy feed that is grown, harvested and shipped to the animals, they fertilize and harvest themselves. Not only does this save us work but it reduces the emissions of greenhouse gases that would have been used in these processes.
If none of this convinces you, the flavor will. Ask our customers and try some for yourself. Millgate Farm grassfed beef has an unbeatable flavor that will have you coming back for more.
See the movie Food, Inc. [find out about our food economy] →
Browse EatWild.com [information on grassfed and research citations] →
Read Pasture Perfect by Joel Salatin [eating grassfed products] →
Find more responsibly-raised food on LocalHarvest.org →
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